December 21, 2010

Radiation continues

The two day break from the radiation was a good thing.  I am going to learn to look forward to these weekends; that is clear to me now. 

Today went as planned with radiation around noon at the hospital and then a two hour hydration drip at Doc Q's office.  Tomorrow will be the same. I snoozed through the hydration - remember I am taking that heavy duty sedative.  I take the sedative about 11A and then live in LaLa land until about 6 or 7 that evening. This is some weird existence.  But at least I am able to do what I need to do each day.

Some early side effects have shown up. The first sensations of a sunburn can be felt on my right neck and cheek.  More troublesome is the thickening of my saliva...did not expect this one for a week or two.  By the way, I am now full into my efforts to try and lessen the damage to my mouth, jaw, teeth and saliva glands. I try and rise my mouth each hour I am awake using a brew of water, salt and baking soda.  I occasionally also do a mouth rinse with a medicine that keeps yeast from growing on my tongue. 

My daily hydration is also an important part of making this journey a little easier the doctors say.  So, once a day up to 7 days a week, they pour a liter of water into my IV port located in my upper right chest. It is amazing that they can dump a liter of water directly into a vein going to my heart like this every day.  But, I don't argue because I feel better after every single one of these fill ups; no exceptions.

While I think I am feeling fine emotionally, I notice that holding a conversation for more than 2-3 minutes is almost impossible for me; in person or on the telephone.  I cannot find words to describe it but it worries me because I am concerned old friends are beginning why I sound so blah and so "not me".  Also my short term memory just continues to deteriorate.  I feel like a live in a little moving 24 to 36 window.  Seriously, if someone were to ask me to tell them about my last week, I absolutely could not do - period.  It frightens the hell out of me!  The doctors, nurses and social work tell me its normal and to get used to it.  Well, that isn't gong to happen...this feel so awful.  I think it also plays into this semi anti-social communication thing I am gong through.

The radiation folks have all been awesome dealing with me and my issues.  Each time a treatment is complete, I have this momentary "high" that comes from realizing that we; the techs and through one more without me blowing up into a mind blowing anxiety attack.while inside the machine.  I thank God for each one of those moments of relief.